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April is Alcohol Awareness Month. How many drinks is too many?

By April 2, 2019 No Comments

It’s ok to consume alchol if you do it responsibly. With taxi’s, Uber, Lyft or a designated driver there really is no reason why anyone should operate a vehicle impaired. But, it happens and there are consequences-the worst being a fatality.

A DUI charge (called “OVI” in Ohio) is a serious offense. Although charged as a first degree misdemeanor, a first DUI conviction in Ohio includes mandatory penalties, including three days in jail, high fines, and a license suspension for up to three years.

“Annies Law” became effective April 6, 2017 with some significant changes. Under Ohio law, drunk driving is referred to as Operating a Motor Vehicle While Intoxicated, or OVI and sometimes referred to as DUI.

Under “Annies Law” the look back period for prior OVI convictions was increased from 6 years to 10 years. Additionally, the law’s major emphasis on the Ignition Interlock Devices now reduce the length of license suspensions and expands the type of driving privileges granted while under suspension for the OVI.  These systems are breathalyzer’s that are installed on the vehicle and connected to the vehicles ignition system. In order to start the vehicle, the driver has to blow into it to register their BAC. If the BAC is below the limit, the car will start; if not, the car won’t. This information is stored and available to the court.

Another major change in the law is the minimum license suspension period. Under “Annies Law” the minimum suspension period was increased from 6 months to 12 months unless the driver agrees to have an ignition interlock device installed; then it drops back to 6 months. The interlock devices aren’t free and can range $200-$300 for installation and up to $200 per month monitoring. Over a 6 month period cost out of pocket could range from $800 to $1,500, not to mention the embarrassment of the device as it’s highly visable.

THE HUMAN TOLL

Drunk Driving comes with a cost – and it is one that robs us of mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, spouses and friends. Meet the people behind the statistics.  MADD

Statistics published by MADD indicate that on any given day there are 300,000 incidents of driving impaired with 30 deaths EVERY DAY and more than 290,000 injuries per year; all preventable.

Although everyone reacts differently to alchohol consumption before they start feeling “tipsy”, “silly” or “drunk”; know your own limits. An example: Female, 150 lbs consuming 3 drinks of vodka in a 4 hour period would have a BAC of .019; meaning you may feel more relazed and would have minor impairment of judgment = DON’T DRIVE!   Check out the video on simulated drunk driving with young drivers.

People Try A Drunk Driving Simulator